Nutmeg

Review
In: Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed) [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US); 2006–.
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Excerpt

Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) seeds contain myristic acid, trymiristin, fatty acid glycerides and an essential oil, thought to be responsible for nutmeg intoxication, containing myristicin, elemicin, eugenol, safrole. Mace is a similar spice made from the dried covering of the nutmeg seed. Nutmeg has no specific lactation-related uses. No data exist on the excretion of any components of nutmeg into breastmilk or on the safety and efficacy of nutmeg in nursing mothers or infants. Nutmeg, mace and their oils are "generally recognized as safe" (GRAS) as food ingredients by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. High doses (e.g., a spoonful) of nutmeg can cause intoxication that includes anticholinergic symptoms. Anticholinergics may reduce lactation.[1,2] In vitro studies found that nutmeg may have antiprogesterone activity,[3] which also theoretically could affect lactation. Nutmeg and mace in amounts higher than those found in foods as a flavoring should be avoided during breastfeeding.

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Publication types

  • Review